The Day After

Having been up to the early hours of this morning following my Grandpa’s death late last night, absolutely the last thing I wanted to do today was wake up at 7.30am to help my Mum out at the Red Maids’ Craft Fair. But as she’s the chairperson of the “Friends”, which is the school’s parents’ body (“Special Friend! Red Maid Friend!” [/Will+Simon]), the show had to go on, and I soon found myself going in a van to a church and loading the vehicle up with tables for the stallholders. Fun? No.

What was basically a contractual obligation to make my mum’s life a bit easier became more of a husk of banality than it would have been, due my overly tired and sensitive state. It didn’t help that while the lady I went to the church with was pleasant enough, she laughed at the end of every single sentence she said, in that way only real churchy people do. After a while it put me on edge – I was waiting for it every time, and when the laugh came, it was like nails running down a blackboard. Not her fault, of course (and I want to reiterate that she was nice and I’m just being grouchy), I just wasn’t in the state of mind to ignore it.

Nonetheless I pulled myself together to help, and after the van extravaganza I moved signs, set up stuff with my sister (who goes to Red Maids herself) and did some emergency shopping for supplies before I called it a morning. I managed to catch a couple of hours’ sleep this afternoon. My brother Dave, meanwhile, stayed for the whole fair. I admire his tenacity.

This evening I went to my Grandma’s house (on the other side of my family) for dinner. She always spoils her guests and tonight was no exception, as the dining room table was packed to the rafters with food. I now feel like I’m carrying a baby elephant inside me. Unfortunately, though, I wasn’t in the right mood to make the most of it, and so I was a bit quiet and a lot knackered, and came home a bit earlier than I usually would have.

I haven’t converted any more of my novel to present tense today. I was totally on a roll with it before, so tomorrow I need to get back to it, even though I still might not feel like doing anything. After all, it doesn’t require much thinking to switch the sentences around – that can wait for the tidy-up afterwards. What I desperately need first is a decent night’s sleep, and then hopefully I’ll be able to get my brain in a better place. But it’s going to take a while for me to get over the loss of Grandpa, even though I knew it was coming.

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